Politics and Planning in Saratoga County
Ryan Bailey '09 and Bob Turner, Department of Government
The continuing economic growth of Saratoga County , and specifically the proposed siting of Advanced Micro Devices Inc, raises the important question of whether the region is condemned to end up as yet another case of unchecked suburban sprawl. To assess the prospects for the region to successfully balance growth with preserving open space and enhancing the quality of life, we analyzed the political, economic, and institutional factors affecting planning in Malta , Stillwater , and Saratoga County . Through a content analysis of their comprehensive plans and semi-structured elite interviews with county and local elected officials, planners, and other involved citizens, we found there are significant challenges to the adoption of smart growth and regional level strategies for managing growth, specifically New York's system of home rule, limited citizen involvement, lack of institutional and fiscal capacity in local governments, and the lack of a competitive two party system. On the positive side, we found that significant public support for smart growth, the leadership of professional planners, and opportunities for political entrepreneurs can potentially offset some, but not all of the challenges.
Full report is not available. Please contact Bob Turner for more information.